UAE-focused Israeli VC fund Synaptech names former defence minister as chairman

 UAE-focused Israeli VC fund Synaptech names former defence minister as chairman

Synaptech Capital, a newly minted Israeli fund that is being set up in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), has named former Israeli defence minister Moshe ‘Bogie’ Ya’alon as the chairman of its board.

Synaptech, which has been founded by the Avnon Group, will invest in 20 startups in the UAE and also counts other strategic partners from the Gulf region.

Ya’alon was previously the defence minister and chief of staff of the Israel Defence Forces. He has also been a deputy prime minister, strategic affairs minister and a member of the country’s political-security cabinet.

The establishment of the new Israeli fund in the UAE comes just over a year after the two countries signed the Abraham Accords, a set of agreements that formalised diplomatic and business relations between them.

The Avnon Group, founded in 1990 by Tomer Avnon, develops cybersecurity and defence solutions for governments, homeland security agencies, law enforcement, and special units in the defence and safety sectors. It operates in over 60 countries.

Avnon said the fund will focus on early-stage startups that provide innovative solutions and technologies in fields like smart cities, public safety, cybersecurity, fintech, and insurtech.

“The Abraham Accords have opened the door to Israel and the United Arab Emirates for strategic cooperation that will affect the two countries for many years to come,” Ya’alon said. “As part of the collaboration, we will create at Synaptech, we will bring the spirit of the Startup Nation [Israel] and the most advanced technologies we have to offer to the Gulf countries.”

As part of the set-up, the Avnon Group will also establish a so-called Innovation centre in the UAE and open an office in Abu Dhabi.

Aman Malik

The Capital Quest